Rainer’s offer puts me in the whirlwind of conflicting emotions. I am flattered and I am emotionally overwhelmed. My mind begins to whirr with all sorts of special pictorial ideas, and the Playmates I would find and produce. Still living in Munich and working with Rainer and Freddy and Heinz, opening up a whole new horizon for my future. The offer puts me between a rock and a hard place. It hasn’t taken me too long to get over my job loss. In the meanwhile I am more than halfway through writing my book. And am dreaming of starting a magazine of my own with a real possibility of Celeste (Huenergard) – the young American woman working as editorial assistant to Donald Stewart, our Italian in-house editorial executive – partnering with me. She has been a big moral support following my termination, keep the chin up. We have shared many a meals together and have lingered in the evenings with Grappas. Boy she is beautiful. Rainer kept saying when we had stopped at the offices of the Italian edition on our way to his country home

So what do I choose? A bird in the hand or two in the bush? Rainer’s offer is so tempting that I really don’t know. For three sleepless nights I agonize over should I and or shouldn’t I? I am conflicted between the future I was beginning to envision and the future that’s offered to me on the silver platter. I am torn and tortured. I am tempted to accept Rainer’s offer and think later. Perhaps I take it for a year or two, defer my dreams for a while – I tell myself, Rainer doesn’t have to know. Things can always change, can’t hey? And I remember the wisdom imparted by Mr. Moore, while both of us laid next to each other at St. Charles Hospital in London; that in business, you should never let your left hand know what your right hand is doing. But that would be totally against my grain, and I want to be honest. I share with Rainer what I am thinking. Rainer wants me on indefinite basis, he has big plans for me.

At the end of those three nights of tossing and turning and having done some serious soul searching, I decline the offer.

© Haresh Shah 2013

Illustration: Celia Rose Marks

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HERR DOKTOR SHAH

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Next Friday, August 30th, 2013

MY INTIMATE ENCOUNTER WITH EROTIC OYSTERS

How I Came to Like, No, Love Oysters? 

Oysters have been credited for their aphrodisiac qualities, but are also considered  visually erotic because of their succulent, raw, moist, tender and glistening look. And yet, I couldn’t for the life of me, see them in that context, let alone really put them in my mouth and savor. The story of my not so keen encounter with this most delicious of the fruit from the sea.    

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